Out with the new, in with the old

Posted by on Saturday, May 14th, 2011

If you saw the little studio tour video I made a while back, you saw my studio.  I adore that room and spend a lot of time there, but it doesn’t generally come first in terms of furnishing budgets.  The knee walls limit shelving options, and our stairs are narrow, and we’ve spent a lot of our time and money improving the house itself since we bought our little fixer-upper, rather than buying things to put in it.  I’ve been using a really basic beat up Ikea table for my machines since my sophomore year of college.   Multiple moves and multiple cats and countless projects later, that table is still stable enough, but it’s scratched and, well, it will never be an heirloom.

All of my hours haunting rural antique stores has paid off in a big way.  Meet my new Mission library table.

It’s Quarter-sawn tiger oak, with handles made by Grand Rapids Brass.  I found it in my favorite antique shop down in central Virginia.  I can’t believe how little I paid for it.  I saw it in late April, bought it over the phone once I measured stairways and entrances to make sure we could get it inside.  I’m doing some research now to see if I can identify the maker and date, but that’s really an academic exercise, because whoever made it made it beautifully.    I’m so excited to have those two drawers to hold bobbins and shears and other tools.  I love the lower shelf, which will be a great place to keep the baskets of scraps I use for quilting.  The grail of the wood just glows, and the bookmatching on the top–heavenly.

The drawers are deep enough to prevent me from using the knee-lift on my sewing machine, so I’m talking to friends who make furniture to see if one can make me a separate sewing machine table for my big Janome.  If it works out, that can slot into the corner, and the two will form an L that will be perfect for pooling a big quilt into the corner.  I know some people daydream about beaches or Hollywood, but right now all I want to dream about is working here, right here, in this little corner of my world.

Maryland Sheep and Wool was wonderful this year.  We had the mildest, most beautiful weather I remember at that festival.  It was great to spend time with all of my dear friends at Tuatha and Spirit Trail, and to see so many friends from local knitting groups and the KR retreat.  I didn’t want to come home.  I didn’t buy much, but I will try to show you my little treasures when I break out the camera.  I’ve been so busy organizing and purging to make way for this table that I’ve been neglecting my camera.

Now back to the studio!  I have a new bag design underway, and have knitting and sock bags I need to photograph, and audiobooks to listen to, and furniture to move, and a studio to organize.

Filed in blather,knitting,sewing | 3 responses so far

3 Responses to “Out with the new, in with the old”

  1. bullwinkleon 17 May 2011 at 4:04 am 1

    Dellightful piece! I love old wood, but I don’t haunt the antique places looking for the perfect piece – I expect it will jump out an find me when the time is right. Great find!

  2. gayleon 17 May 2011 at 10:17 am 2

    That table is wonderful! (As the owner of a sewing table that’s a rickety saggy old folding table that leaves my machine at a drunken angle (and bounces it at high speeds), I can appreciate the stability of your treasure.)

  3. lellaon 30 May 2011 at 6:20 pm 3

    It’s beautiful! What a great find. I live with regret that I no longer have my oak library table that I got for a song in my teens.

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